“Jasmine Revolution”
Symbol of peace: Flowers placed on the barrel of a tank
in very much calmer protests than in recent days in Tunisia

'The Protester' - Time Person of the Year 2011

'The Protester' - Time Person of the Year 2011
Mannoubia Bouazizi, the mother of Tunisian street vendor Mohammed Bouazizi. "Mohammed suffered a lot. He worked hard. but when he set fire to himself, it wasn’t about his scales being confiscated. It was about his dignity." (Peter Hapak for TIME)

How eyepatches became a symbol of Egypt's revolution - Graffiti depicting a high ranking army officer with an eye patch Photograph: Nasser Nasser/ASSOCIATED PRESS

2 - EGYPT Democratic Change / Freedom of Speech (In Transition)


''17 February Revolution"

3 - LIBYA Democratic Change / Freedom of Speech (In Transition)

5 - SYRIA Democratic Change / Freedom of Speech (In Transition)

"25 January Youth Revolution"
Muslim and Christian shoulder-to-shoulder in Tahrir Square
"A Summary" – Apr 2, 2011 (Kryon channelled by Lee Carroll) (Subjects: Religion, Shift of Human Consciousness, 2012, Intelligent/Benevolent Design, EU, South America, 5 Currencies, Water Cycle (Heat up, Mini Ice Ace, Oceans, Fish, Earthquakes ..), Middle East, Internet, Israel, Dictators, Palestine, US, Japan (Quake/Tsunami Disasters , People, Society ...), Nuclear Power Revealed, Hydro Power, Geothermal Power, Moon, Financial Institutes (Recession, Realign integrity values ..) , China, North Korea, Global Unity,..... etc.) -
(Subjects: Egypt Uprising, Iran/Persia Uprising, Peace in Middle East without Israel actively involved, Muhammad, "Conceptual" Youth Revolution, "Conceptual" (without a manager hierarchy) managed Businesses, Internet, Social Media, News Media, Google, Bankers, Global Unity,..... etc.)
"The End of History" – Nov 20, 2010 (Kryon channelled by Lee Carroll)
(Subjects:Abraham, Isaac, Ishmael, Muhammad, Jesus, God, Jews, Arabs, EU, US, Israel, Iran, Russia, Africa, South America, Global Unity,..... etc.) (Text version)

"If an Arab and a Jew can look at one another and see the Akashic lineage and see the one family, there is hope. If they can see that their differences no longer require that they kill one another, then there is a beginning of a change in history. And that's what is happening now. All of humanity, no matter what the spiritual belief, has been guilty of falling into the historic trap of separating instead of unifying. Now it's starting to change. There's a shift happening."


“ … Here is another one. A change in what Human nature will allow for government. "Careful, Kryon, don't talk about politics. You'll get in trouble." I won't get in trouble. I'm going to tell you to watch for leadership that cares about you. "You mean politics is going to change?" It already has. It's beginning. Watch for it. You're going to see a total phase-out of old energy dictatorships eventually. The potential is that you're going to see that before 2013.

They're going to fall over, you know, because the energy of the population will not sustain an old energy leader ..."



Heads of governments during the opening session of the African Union summit
on January 30, 2014 at the AU headquarters in Addis Ababa (AFP, Samuel Gebru)

Nelson Mandela

Nelson Mandela
Few words can describe Nelson Mandela, so we let him speak for himself. Happy birthday, Madiba.
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Sunday, August 31, 2014

Israel estimates cost of Gaza conflict at £1.5bn

Education sector likely to be hardest hit as Binyamin Netanyahu seeks 2% cut to government spending to offset cost of Gaza war

theguardian.com, Peter Beaumont in Jerusalem, Sunday 31 August 2014

Prime minister Binyamin Netanyahu is looking to reduce government
spending by 2% this year. Photograph: Jim Hollander/EPA

Israel has been presented with a hefty bill for 50 days of war in Gaza, as the prime minister, Binyamin Netanyahu, moved to slash government spending by 2% this year to offset the $2.52 bn (£1.51bn) cost of the conflict.

With only the Israeli military and domestic intelligence agency Shin Bet exempt from the sharp spending reductions, the area to be hit hardest emerged as the Israeli education system, with critics – including members of Netanyahu's cabinet – predicting that the poorest Israelis will feel the brunt of the cuts.

Among those protesting was the welfare minister, Meir Cohen, who insisted there was no more fat in his budget to trim.

"From whom will we take? From those who have nothing to put in their children's sandwiches for school?" he complained on Israeli army radio.

Amid estimates by some economic observers that the war may have cost Israel a decline of 0.5% in its growth in GDP, Netanyahu defended the stringent across-the-board cuts before a cabinet meeting in the country's south on Sunday, insisting: "Security comes first."

The proposed emergency budget reductions, amounting to about $561m, will help fund a sharp hike in the budget of Israel's armed forces and Shin Bet amid estimates that the latest round of fighting in Gaza cost Israel $50m for each day of the war.

The Israeli budget for this year – even before the war and the latest proposed cuts – had already heralded a bout of belt-tightening that had seen a fierce fight over spending cuts, later reversed, to the Israeli defence forces.

On the Palestinian side experts have estimated that the bill for reconstruction after the conflict could be upwards of $6bn and take 20 years to accomplish under the current Israeli and Egyptian restrictions on imports of building materials into Gaza.

The Israeli budget cuts come amid evidence that Israel's economy – which had already been slowing to a sluggish 1.7% growth in the second quarter of this year, including the key hi-tech sector – had been hard hit by the weeks of conflict, not least tourism.

Netanyahu has also been facing demands to increase the scope of an already large compensation package for southern Israeli communities close to the Gaza Strip.

Speaking ahead of the cabinet meeting on Sunday, Netanyahu insisted: "We are starting to fill in what is lacking in the defence budget, As we saw recently, defence comes before all else.

"We will start to fill in what is missing in the defence establishment. This reflects our understanding of the priorities, with security coming before all else. We did great things, but this requires us to roll up our sleeves to enable the IDF, the Israel security agency [Shin Bet], and the security services to continue to defend Israel effectively."

The new austerity programme – which had been anticipated – emerged amid continuing criticism by Israelis of Netanyahu and his government, whose approval has plummeted since a long-term cease fire with Hamas was agreed last week.

The scale of the cuts have been dictated by the insistence of Netanyahu's finance minister, Yair Lapid, that he will not raise taxes to cover any shortfall.

The disclosure of the scope and potential impact of the proposed cuts came as Israel announced on Sunday a land appropriation in the occupied West Bank that an anti-settlement group termed the biggest in 30 years and a Palestinian official said would cause only more friction after the Gaza war.

Four hundred hectares (988 acres) in the Etzion settlement bloc near Bethlehem were declared "state land, on the instructions of the political echelon" by the military-run civil administration.

Israel Radio said the step was taken in response to the kidnapping and killing of three Jewish teenagers by Hamas militants in the area in June. The notice published by the military gave no reason for the decision.

Related Articles:



Bridging the divide between young Israelis and Palestinians

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Zimbabwe police beat, detain opposition protesters

Yahoo – AFP, 27 Aug 2014

Zimbabwean riot police patrol outside Harare Magistrate's Court on March 19, 
2013 (AFP Photo/Alexander Joe)

Harare (AFP) - Zimbabwe riot police beat and briefly detained more than a dozen opposition protesters on Wednesday, at a demonstration over high unemployment, an AFP correspondent witnessed.

Police armed with batons descended on around 100 members of the opposition Movement for Democratic Change marching in the capital Harare, days after its party leader advocated a wave of nationwide demonstrations.

Protesters -- who were carrying placards reading "We demand jobs" -- were beaten and bundled into marked police vans as they headed toward parliament to present a petition to the speaker of national assembly.

Police said there were no formal arrests.

"The Zimbabwe Republic Police dispersed the unruly elements that had been in Harare's central business district who were blocking traffic and throwing stones," said spokesman Paul Nyathi.

"The constitution of Zimbabwe does not allow people to demonstrate unlawfully."

The MDC said at least three people were still in custody and denied any acts of violence.

"Our youths were peacefully demonstrating in demand for jobs. They were doing so in terms of the Constitution," said MDC spokesman Douglas Mwonzora.

"Initially police arrested 28, but some of them were released. We do not know about the others but we understand three are still in custody."

The protesters want long-ruling President Robert Mugabe to fix Zimbabwe's economy, which has lurched from crisis to crisis over the last 20 years, bringing bouts of hyper-inflation and excruciating levels of unemployment.

An estimated 300,000 Zimbabweans have fled to neighbouring South Africa alone to look for work.

Mugabe, now 90, was re-elected last year in a disputed vote after promising to create jobs, extending his rule into its 34th year.

He is currently on a five-day visit to China, in a bid to drum up financial support and investment for agriculture and infrastructure projects.

China invested more in non-financial sectors in Zimbabwe than in any other country on the continent last year, around $602 million, according to figures from Beijing.

Chinese companies are active in mining, construction, telecommunications and agriculture.

At least two China-linked firms, Anjin Investments and Jinan Mining, have operated concessions at Zimbabwe's hugely lucrative Marange diamond field.

But ordinary Zimbabweans have seen little impact from the trade.

The MDC's Morgan Tsvangirai -- the runner-up in last year's poll -- has suggested a series of nationwide protests against the government's failure to stem the economic meltdown.

Previous demonstrations against Mugabe's government have been brutally put down by the security services.

The latest demonstration comes a week after police quelled another MDC rally and arrested seven. Those protesters remain in custody.

Commentators see Tsvangirai's call as a reaction to growing anger among Zimbabweans about the moribund economy, and also as an attempt to reinvigorate his opposition party after consecutive electoral defeats.

Tsvangirai's leadership of the party has been called into question, with the recent breakaway of a faction led by a former finance minister.

Saturday, August 23, 2014

Mass rally against extending Burkina president's mandate

Yahoo – AFP, 23 Aug 2014

Burkinabe opposition supporters take part in an opposition rally in Ouagadougou,
Burkina Faso on August 23, 2014 (AFP Photo/Ahmed Ouoba)

Ouagadougou (AFP) - Tens of thousands of people marched Saturday in the capital of Burkina Faso to protest against any move by the president to extend his decades-hold on power, in the latest such opposition rally.

Blaise Compaore, an often controversial titan of west African politics, has hinted he may seek a referendum on whether to change the constitution to allow him to run in 2015 polls.

Organisers said more than 100,000 protesters had taken part in the Ouagadougou rally in what they termed "record mobilisation." AFP was unable to get a police estimate.

Burkina Faso's opposition supporters hold
banner during an opposition rally in 
Ouagadougou on August 23, 2014 (AFP
Photo/Ahmed Ouoba)
The rally spanned several kilometres and demonstrators marched to the presidency and back, shouting slogans such as "No to the referendum", "Enough of Compaore's dictatorship" or "No need for a strongman in Burkina."

Roch Marc Christian Kabore, who used to be close to the president but has since become head of the MPP opposition party, said people had mobilised "against life-long power".

Anger has been growing against the planned referendum on whether to modify the constitution, which limits the president to a maximum of two five-year terms in office.

Compaore was only 36 when he seized power in an October 1987 coup in which his former friend and one of Africa's most loved leaders, Thomas Sankara, was ousted and assassinated.

He has remained in power since then. In 2005, constitutional limits were introduced and Compaore is therefore coming to the end of his second five-year term.

He has hinted that the referendum may be held in December, but no official decision has been made.

Observers say opposition to any attempt by Compaore to cling to power is driven by youth in a country where 60 percent of the 17 million-strong population is under 25.

This means they have spent their entire lives under the leadership of one man and -- with the poor former French colony stagnating at around 183rd out of 186 countries on the UN human development index -- many have had enough.

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

My plea to the people of Israel: Liberate yourselves by liberating Palestine

Archbishop Emeritus Desmond Tutu, in an exclusive article for Haaretz, calls for a global boycott of Israel and urges Israelis and Palestinians to look beyond their leaders for a sustainable solution to the crisis in the Holy Land.

Haaretz, By Desmond Tutu, Aug. 14, 2014

A child next to a picture of Nelson Mandela at a pro-Palestinian rally
in Cape Town. August 9, 2014 Photo by AP

The past weeks have witnessed unprecedented action by members of civil society across the world against the injustice of Israel’s disproportionately brutal response to the firing of missiles from Palestine.

If you add together all the people who gathered over the past weekend to demand justice in Israel and Palestine – in Cape Town, Washington, D.C., New York, New Delhi, London, Dublin and Sydney, and all the other cities – this was arguably the largest active outcry by citizens around a single cause ever in the history of the world.

A quarter of a century ago, I participated in some well-attended demonstrations against apartheid. I never imagined we’d see demonstrations of that size again, but last Saturday’s turnout in Cape Town was as big if not bigger. Participants included young and old, Muslims, Christians, Jews, Hindus, Buddhists, agnostics, atheists, blacks, whites, reds and greens ... as one would expect from a vibrant, tolerant, multicultural nation.

I asked the crowd to chant with me: “We are opposed to the injustice of the illegal occupation of Palestine. We are opposed to the indiscriminate killing in Gaza. We are opposed to the indignity meted out to Palestinians at checkpoints and roadblocks. We are opposed to violence perpetrated by all parties. But we are not opposed to Jews.”

Earlier in the week, I called for the suspension of Israel from the International Union of Architects, which was meeting in South Africa.

I appealed to Israeli sisters and brothers present at the conference to actively disassociate themselves and their profession from the design and construction of infrastructure related to perpetuating injustice, including the separation barrier, the security terminals and checkpoints, and the settlements built on occupied Palestinian land.

“I implore you to take this message home: Please turn the tide against violence and hatred by joining the nonviolent movement for justice for all people of the region,” I said.

Over the past few weeks, more than 1.6 million people across the world have signed onto this movement by joining an Avaaz campaign calling on corporations profiting from the Israeli occupation and/or implicated in the abuse and repression of Palestinians to pull out. The campaign specifically targets Dutch pension fund ABP; Barclays Bank; security systems supplier G4S; French transport company Veolia; computer company Hewlett-Packard; and bulldozer supplier Caterpillar.

Last month, 17 EU governments urged their citizens to avoid doing business in or investing in illegal Israeli settlements.

We have also recently witnessed the withdrawal by Dutch pension fund PGGM of tens of millions of euros from Israeli banks; the divestment from G4S by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation; and the U.S. Presbyterian Church divested an estimated $21 million from HP, Motorola Solutions and Caterpillar.

It is a movement that is gathering pace.

Violence begets violence and hatred, that only begets more violence and hatred.

We South Africans know about violence and hatred. We understand the pain of being the polecat of the world; when it seems nobody understands or is even willing to listen to our perspective. It is where we come from.

We also know the benefits that dialogue between our leaders eventually brought us; when organizations labeled “terrorist” were unbanned and their leaders, including Nelson Mandela, were released from imprisonment, banishment and exile.

We know that when our leaders began to speak to each other, the rationale for the violence that had wracked our society dissipated and disappeared. Acts of terrorism perpetrated after the talks began – such as attacks on a church and a pub – were almost universally condemned, and the party held responsible snubbed at the ballot box.

The exhilaration that followed our voting together for the first time was not the preserve of black South Africans alone. The real triumph of our peaceful settlement was that all felt included. And later, when we unveiled a constitution so tolerant, compassionate and inclusive that it would make God proud, we all felt liberated.

Of course, it helped that we had a cadre of extraordinary leaders.

But what ultimately forced these leaders together around the negotiating table was the cocktail of persuasive, nonviolent tools that had been developed to isolate South Africa, economically, academically, culturally and psychologically.

At a certain point – the tipping point – the then-government realized that the cost of attempting to preserve apartheid outweighed the benefits.

The withdrawal of trade with South Africa by multinational corporations with a conscience in the 1980s was ultimately one of the key levers that brought the apartheid state – bloodlessly – to its knees. Those corporations understood that by contributing to South Africa’s economy, they were contributing to the retention of an unjust status quo.

Those who continue to do business with Israel, who contribute to a sense of “normalcy” in Israeli society, are doing the people of Israel and Palestine a disservice. They are contributing to the perpetuation of a profoundly unjust status quo.

Those who contribute to Israel’s temporary isolation are saying that Israelis and Palestinians are equally entitled to dignity and peace.

Ultimately, events in Gaza over the past month or so are going to test who believes in the worth of human beings.

It is becoming more and more clear that politicians and diplomats are failing to come up with answers, and that responsibility for brokering a sustainable solution to the crisis in the Holy Land rests with civil society and the people of Israel and Palestine themselves.

Besides the recent devastation of Gaza, decent human beings everywhere – including many in Israel – are profoundly disturbed by the daily violations of human dignity and freedom of movement Palestinians are subjected to at checkpoints and roadblocks. And Israel’s policies of illegal occupation and the construction of buffer-zone settlements on occupied land compound the difficulty of achieving an agreementsettlement in the future that is acceptable for all.

The State of Israel is behaving as if there is no tomorrow. Its people will not live the peaceful and secure lives they crave – and are entitled to – as long as their leaders perpetuate conditions that sustain the conflict.

I have condemned those in Palestine responsible for firing missiles and rockets at Israel. They are fanning the flames of hatred. I am opposed to all manifestations of violence.

But we must be very clear that the people of Palestine have every right to struggle for their dignity and freedom. It is a struggle that has the support of many around the world.

No human-made problems are intractable when humans put their heads together with the earnest desire to overcome them. No peace is impossible when people are determined to achieve it.

Peace requires the people of Israel and Palestine to recognize the human being in themselves and each other; to understand their interdependence.

Missiles, bombs and crude invective are not part of the solution. There is no military solution.

The solution is more likely to come from that nonviolent toolbox we developed in South Africa in the 1980s, to persuade the government of the necessity of altering its policies.

The reason these tools – boycott, sanctions and divestment – ultimately proved effective was because they had a critical mass of support, both inside and outside the country. The kind of support we have witnessed across the world in recent weeks, in respect of Palestine.

My plea to the people of Israel is to see beyond the moment, to see beyond the anger at feeling perpetually under siege, to see a world in which Israel and Palestine can coexist – a world in which mutual dignity and respect reign.

It requires a mind-set shift. A mind-set shift that recognizes that attempting to perpetuate the current status quo is to damn future generations to violence and insecurity. A mind-set shift that stops regarding legitimate criticism of a state’s policies as an attack on Judaism. A mind-set shift that begins at home and ripples out across communities and nations and regions – to the Diaspora scattered across the world we share. The only world we share.

People united in pursuit of a righteous cause are unstoppable. God does not interfere in the affairs of people, hoping we will grow and learn through resolving our difficulties and differences ourselves. But God is not asleep. The Jewish scriptures tell us that God is biased on the side of the weak, the dispossessed, the widow, the orphan, the alien who set slaves free on an exodus to a Promised Land. It was the prophet Amos who said we should let righteousness flow like a river.

Goodness prevails in the end. The pursuit of freedom for the people of Palestine from humiliation and persecution by the policies of Israel is a righteous cause. It is a cause that the people of Israel should support.

Nelson Mandela famously said that South Africans would not feel free until Palestinians were free.

He might have added that the liberation of Palestine will liberate Israel, too.

Related Article:

"The Evolution of Belief" - July 26, 2014 (Kryon Channelling by Lee Carroll) - (>26 Min - reference to the current conflicts in the Middle East)

Monday, August 18, 2014

Pakistani interfaith couples brave threats for forbidden love

Yahoo – AFP, Khurram Shahzad, 17 Aug 2014

Bushra Parveen (L) and her husband Riaz Masih pose with their children at
their home in Faisalabad, Pakistan, on May 9, 2014 (AFP Photo/Farooq Naeem)

Lahore (Pakistan) (AFP) - Thirteen years ago among the whirring looms of a garment factory in an eastern Pakistani city, a Muslim woman fell in love with a Christian co-worker.

Now married with three children, Kalsoom Bibi and her husband Yousuf Bhatti have been shunned by their communities, endured death threats and an abduction, all in the name of religious honour in this conservative Islamic country.

Marriage out of choice remains a taboo in Pakistan, particularly when it involves a partner outside one's own clan or faith group.

Video journalist Naadir Maan (L) and his 
wife Saba speak during an interview with
 AFP in Faisalabad, Pakistan, on May 9,
2014 (AFP Photo/Farooq Naeem)
While marriages between different members of Abrahamic faiths -- including Judaism, Christianity and Islam -- is permitted by law, a Muslim woman may not marry a non-Muslim man.

People who chose to convert out from Islam can be charged with blasphemy and face life in prison.

Kalsoom's first encounter with a member of another religion came at school, where the only Christian student was mercilessly bullied.

When she met Yousuf, she decided to question him about his faith to find out more. Long hours of discussion brought the two close together, and she eventually decided to convert.

It is a fact she hides to this day from her family.

"My mother died requesting me to leave my Christian husband," Kalsoom, a short woman in her twenties with deep brown eyes said, sitting on her bed in a modest two-room house with her husband and children.

"Had she known that I myself have been converted to Christianity, she would had died with grief or asked her family to kill me."

Such unions aren't officially recorded but rights activists believe there are thousands of such cases every year.

The couple say they now live among a more understanding community that provides them support and respect their choices -- but it wasn't always this way.

"The life after marriage was terrible. We went into hiding because the family and community threatened to kill us.

"We lived in hiding in Islamabad for several months and my son was born during that time," she said.

Yousuf said the most harrowing incident early on in their marriage when he was abducted by four Muslim militants and driven hours out of town to a deserted spot.

"They kept me there for several days and asked me why I married my wife.

"They wanted to kill me, but when I told them that I married my wife with her own will and because she also wanted to marry me -- and that I did not force her into this marriage -- they softened and released me after some days," he added.

Naveed Walter, President of Human Rights Focus Pakistan (HRFP), said the case was symptomatic of a wider problem, which remains largely hidden from sight.

"In such cases (inter-faith marriages) people try to attack the whole community," he said.

Walter added his organisation had estimated 10,000 cases nationwide over the past four years.

Honour killings

Legally, there are no provisions in the criminal code against leaving Islam, though the country's blasphemy law -- which carries a life sentence -- has been invoked in recent cases against apostates.

But even when members from the minority community convert to Islam, they can still face a backlash.

Sana, a Christian teacher from the same eastern city met and fell in love with cameraman Salman Khawaja who had come to record a show about Christmas festivities in 2006.

Drawn to Islamic traditions and culture since her childhood, Sana decided to embrace Islam.

The couple's lives became "hellish" after marriage and they said they had to leave their city to avoid death.

"We were threatened from both Christian and Muslim communities. So we decided to leave the city to save our lives," Sana told AFP holding her two-year-old son.

Shamaun Anwar and his wife Nadia pose for a photo with their young child during
 an interview with AFP, in Faisalabad, Pakistan, on May 9, 2014 (AFP Photo/
Farooq Naeem)

Despite being a journalist with connections to local government officials, Salman found himself helpless to fight back.

"We decided to get married in another city to avoid any attacks by our families and communities," he said.

"Back at our homes, our families were planning to kill us for marrying across religion as they thought we had stolen their pride and honour.

"It was very difficult period for us, we remained in hiding for six months to avoid any attacks. I had no career over there," he said, adding that he drove a taxi to earn a living.

"When the situation got better, we returned ... but my family refused to accept us. Then we rented a house in a low category residential area and started a new life."

Rising extremism

For some, the trauma never goes away.

Nadia, a petite, light-skinned 19-year-old former Muslim fell in love with 24-year-old Christian man Shamaun Anwar, an embroiderer, who used to smile at her in the street as they went to work.

They planned to marry in secret until Nadia's parents found out about them and forced her to marry her cousin instead. When she refused to move in with him, they began beating her.

"They used to beat me whenever I told them that I won't live with my husband and will marry Shamaun," she said.

"They still threaten me, even after I divorced my cousin and married Shamaun. I am now more scared because I have converted to Christianity," she added tearfully.

Some campaigners including lawyer Akmal Bhatti advocate the creation of a civil marriage code as is the case in India so that it is possible to keep faith out of the wedding ceremony.

Others are less hopeful, citing the rising number of attacks against the country's beleaguered minorities as a sign of rising intolerance.

Related Articles:



"The Recalibration of Awareness – Apr 20/21, 2012 (Kryon channeled by Lee Carroll) (Subjects: Old Energy, Recalibration LecturesGod / CreatorReligions/Spiritual systems  (Catholic Church, Priests/Nun’s, Worship, John Paul Pope, Women in the Church otherwise church will go, Current Pope won’t do it),  Middle East, Jews, Governments will change (Internet, Media, Democracies, Dictators, North Korea, Nations voted at once), Integrity (Businesses, Tobacco Companies, Bankers/ Financial Institutes, Pharmaceutical company to collapse),  Illuminati (Started in Greece, with Shipping, Financial markets, Stock markets, Pharmaceutical money (fund to build Africa, to develop)), Shift of Human Consciousness, (Old) Souls, Women, Masters to/already come back, Global Unity.... etc.) (Text version)

“… New Tolerance

Look for a softening of finger pointing and an awakening of new tolerance. There will remain many systems for different cultures, as traditions and history are important to sustaining the integrity of culture. So there are many in the Middle East who would follow the prophet and they will continue, but with an increase of awareness. It will be the increase of awareness of what the prophet really wanted all along - unity and tolerance. The angel in the cave instructed him to "unify the tribes and give them the God of Israel." You're going to start seeing a softening of intolerance and the beginning of a new way of being.

Eventually, this will create an acknowledgement that says, "You may not believe the way we believe, but we honor you and your God. We honor our prophet and we will love you according to his teachings. We don't have to agree in order to love." How would you like that? The earth is not going to turn into one belief system. It never will, for Humans don't do that. There must be variety, and there must be the beauty of cultural differences. But the systems will slowly update themselves with increased awareness of the truth of a new kind of balance. So that's the first thing. Watch for these changes, dear ones.  …”

Friday, August 15, 2014

Mobile phone games developed in Africa

Companies developing games for mobile phones are springing up in East Africa. Although the mobile gaming market there is growing, financial returns are still small. But the developers aren't easily discouraged.

Deutsche Welle, 15 Aug 2014


On the display of 11-year-old Kanini's mobile phone, a matatu - one of those notorious Kenyan share taxis - is roaring along a straight road. The yellow-striped minibus passes a stop sign and more cash is clocked up on the taxi meter. "Cool" says Kanini. "You have to dodge all the other road users - trucks, motorbikes, old cars." Then, all of sudden, another minibus appears, a black one. The game ends - in a crash!

The mobile game is Ma3 Racer. "Matatus here in Nairobi drive like maniacs anyway," said Mwaura Kikore who had the idea for it. Kikore is one of the co-founders of Planet Rackus, the company that developed Kenya's first gaming apps.

Mwaura Kikore is planning a more
ambitious game with better graphics
The first version of Ma3 Racer (tatu means three in Kiswahili), with low resolution graphics for basic mobile phones, was released three years ago. The game's developers didn't have very high expectations of it. "If the game had been downloaded 10,000 times in the first year, we would have thought that great," Kikore said. "But then we reached that target in the first three days. In the first year we had notched up over a million downloads."

Preserving African culture

Basic mobile phones are common in Kenya. 80 percent of the population uses them because Kenya does not possess an extensive, reliable landline network. The same is true elsewhere in East Africa. The mobile games market is booming."We're counting on it," said Daniel Okalany, head of Kola Studios, a game development company in Uganda."We are hoping that smartphones will sell faster than all other mobile phones. That's why we are making apps for mobile phones and not for PCs or the Internet," he said.

Kola's games include Mosquito Rush in which you have to swat some rather aggressive insects. They also offer apps that simulate traditional African card games. "We are helping to preserve African culture" said Okalany. "Everything that isn't digitalized these days gets quickly forgotten. That's why we want to preserve these games."

Ma3 Racer exceeded the developers' wildest expectations

African heroes

Kikore said African games differ slightly from their European or American counterparts. "That doesn't necessarily mean that these games are just for Africans. They have universal appeal. But we have African heroes, the settings are African or involve Africans in non-African settings," he said.

At the moment it is not profitable to develop games solely for the African market. Most Africans cannot afford even the more inexpensive smartphones, let alone gaming apps for these devices. App stores are international anyway. The market for apps is worth billions of dollars (euros) and the competition is tough. "Nobody on this continent can earn his living from developing games. We all have day jobs and we develop games when we have time," said Kikore.

Kikore has a job in an advertising agency. But he doesn't want to stay there forever. He is working on an adventure game. It will have ten levels, 3D graphics and be sophisticated enough so that gamers will be prepared to pay to use it.

Saturday, August 9, 2014

Uganda gay pride party after tough law overturned

Yahoo – AFP, Grace Matsiko, 9 Aug 2014

Ugandans wave a rainbow flag reading "Join hands to end LGBT (Kuchu's)
genocide" as they celebrate during a gay pride rally in Entebbe, on August 9, 2014

Dancing and waving rainbow-coloured flags, Ugandan activists held their first gay pride rally Saturday since the overturning of a tough anti-homosexuality law, which authorities have appealed.

"This event is to bring us together. Everyone was in hiding before because of the anti-homosexuality law," organiser Sandra Ntebi told AFP.

"It is a happy day for all of us, getting together," Ntebi said, noting that police had granted permission for the invitation-only "Uganda Pride" rally.

(Photo: Isaac Kasamani/AFP)
The overturned law, condemned as "abominable" by rights groups but popular among many Ugandans, called for proven homosexuals to be jailed for life.

The constitutional court threw it out on a technicality on August 1, six months after it took effect, and the government swiftly filed an appeal, while lawmakers have signed a petition for a new vote on the bill.

Homosexuality remains illegal in Uganda, punishable by a jail sentence. But it is no longer illegal to promote homosexuality, and Ugandans are no longer obliged to denounce gays to the authorities.

Amid music and laughter, activists gathered at botanical gardens on the shores of Lake Victoria, barely a kilometre (half a mile) from the presidential palace at Entebbe, a key town some 35 kilometres from the capital Kampala.

"Some Ugandans are gay. Get over it," read one sticker a man had pasted onto his face.

'Now I have the courage'

Ugandan Deputy Attorney General Fred Ruhinda said Saturday that state lawyers had lodged an appeal against the ruling at the Supreme Court, the country's highest court.

"We are unsatisfied with the court ruling," Ruhinda told AFP. "The law was not intended to victimise gay people, it was for the common good."

(Photo: Isaac Kasamani/AFP)
In their surprise ruling last week, judges said it had been passed without the necessary quorum of lawmakers in parliament.

Rights groups said the law triggered a sharp increase in arrests and assaults on members of the country's lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community.

Homophobia is widespread in Uganda, where American-style evangelical Christianity is on the rise.

Gay men and women face frequent harassment and threats of violence.

On Saturday, however, activists celebrated openly.

"Since I discovered I was gay I feared coming out, but now I have the courage after the law was thrown out," Alex Musoke told AFP, one of more than 100 people at the event.

One pair of activists waved a rainbow flag with a slogan appealing for people to "join hands" to end the "genocide" of homosexuals.

Some wore masks for fear of being identified -- Uganda's tabloid newspapers have previously printed photographs of prominent activists -- while others showed their faces openly and wore colourful fancy dress.

(Photo: Isaac Kasamani/AFP)
But activist Pepe Onziema said he and his colleagues would not rest until they were sure the law was gone for good.

"Uganda is giving a bad example, not only to the region but to the world, by insisting on this law," he said.

"We are Africans, we want to show an African struggle by civil society."

There was little police presence, and no one came to protest the celebration, even if many in the town said they did not approve.

"This is unbelievable, I can't imagine being a gay," said motorbike taxi driver William Kamurasi in disgust.

"It's a shame to Uganda. Police must stop these activities of the gays."

Lawmakers demand new vote

Critics said President Yoweri Museveni signed the law to win domestic support ahead of a presidential election set for 2016, which will be his 30th year in power.

(Photo: Emmanuel Leroux-Nega)
But it lost him friends abroad, with several international donors freezing or redirecting millions of dollars of government aid, saying the country had violated human rights and democratic principles.

US Secretary of State John Kerry likened the law to anti-Semitic legislation in Nazi Germany.

Analysts suggest that Museveni secretly encouraged last week's court ruling as it provided a way to avoid the appearance of caving in to foreign pressure.

But gay rights activists warn the battle is not over.

Lawmakers signed a petition calling for a new vote on the bill, and to bypass parliamentary rules that require it be formally reintroduced from scratch -- a process that could take years.



Wednesday, August 6, 2014

US announces $14 bn in new investments at Africa summit

Yahoo – AFP, Paul Handley, 5 Aug 2014

A sign is seen promoting the US-Africa Leaders Summit is seen July 31, 2014
 outside the US Department of State (L) where President Obama will host African
Leaders August 4-6,2014 in Washington, DC (AFP Photo/Paul J. Richards)

Washington (AFP) - The United States heralded $14 billion worth of new investments in Africa Tuesday as Washington seeks to demonstrate it is ready to take a strong role in the continent's economic takeoff.

President Barack Obama is to announce the projects later in the day to some 45 African heads of state and government gathered in the US capital for a historic, three-day summit.

The first day of the meeting Monday saw US officials chiding their guests over democratic reform and civil rights.

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry speaks
 at the Resilience and Food Security in
Changing Climate Forum at the National
 Academy of Sciences as part of the first 
U.S.-Africa Leaders Summit on August 4,
2014 in Washington, DC (AFP Photo/
Pete Marovich)
But now Obama and titans of commerce and industry will try to convince their counterparts that America is as determined to take part in Africa's growth story as China or Europe.

"With a young, dynamic population and a burgeoning private sector, Africa is already a vital market for foreign investors. And that is why we are here today," US Treasury Secretary Jacob Lew told political and business leaders.

"We want to drive more US investment in Africa, increase trade between Africa and the United States, and spur job creation both here and in Africa."

Hundreds of US and African business chiefs are joining political leaders in forums Tuesday, including the top executives of General Electric, Coca-Cola and Walmart, as well as African billionaires such as Nigerian commodities king Aliko Dangote, telecoms tycoon Mo Ibrahim, and Ashish Thakkar, the young founder of the tech-focused Mara Group.

But outside of a few top companies, US businesses faced criticism that they are less knowledgeable and more afraid of risks on the continent than their European and Asian rivals.

The United States remains the largest source of investment but most of that has been in the oil and gas sector.

Meanwhile, China and Europe have built stronger positions in infrastructure, manufacturing and trade, with China's trade with Africa more than double that of the United States.

American companies "are still thinking about Africa as a decade ago... whereas things have really changed dramatically. Africa now has been growing at about 5.5 percent on average in the last decade," said Dangote, Africa's richest man whose fortune is estimated at more than $20 billion.

"There is a lot of perceived risk. People only talk about risk. But the majority of those who perceive risk don't know the story. They have not really been there."

'Time to do business is now'

US Commerce Secretary Penny Pritzker said Washington would boost efforts to build commercial ties, with more government help on financing and more trade missions going both ways.

"The time to do business in Africa is no longer five years away. The time to do business is now."

Pritzker stressed that building trade and investments with Africa would be good for both sides, helping African countries develop and creating jobs in the United States.

"As Africa's middle class continues to expand, we hope to see our export numbers grow," she said.

The summit was partly overshadowed by the rapid spread of the deadly Ebola virus in West Africa, with two infected Americans evacuated to the United States for treatment, and a first case appearing in Saudi Arabia.

As the World Health Organization said the toll had neared 900, the World Bank announced up to $200 million in emergency aid to Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone to help contain the outbreak.


Obama said it was time to transform the US relationship with Africa
to a more equal footing
Obama: World needs 'prosperous and self-reliant Africa'


"The End of History"- Nov 20, 2010 (Kryon channeled by Lee Carroll)

".. Africa

Let me tell you where else it's happening that you are unaware - that which is the beginning of the unity of the African states. Soon the continent will have what they never had before, and when that continent is healed and there is no AIDS and no major disease, they're going to want what you have. They're going to want houses and schools and an economy that works without corruption. They will be done with small-minded leaders who kill their populations for power in what has been called for generations "The History of Africa." Soon it will be the end of history in Africa, and a new continent will emerge.

Be aware that the strength may not come from the expected areas, for new leadership is brewing. There is so much land there and the population is so ready there, it will be one of the strongest economies on the planet within two generations plus 20 years. And it's going to happen because of a unifying idea put together by a few. These are the potentials of the planet, and the end of history as you know it.

In approximately 70 years, there will be a black man who leads this African continent into affluence and peace. He won't be a president, but rather a planner and a revolutionary economic thinker. He, and a strong woman with him, will implement the plan continent-wide. They will unite. This is the potential and this is the plan. Africa will arise out the ashes of centuries of disease and despair and create a viable economic force with workers who can create good products for the day. You think China is economically strong? China must do what it does, hobbled by the secrecy and bias of the old ways of its own history. As large as it is, it will have to eventually compete with Africa, a land of free thinkers and fast change. China will have a major competitor, one that doesn't have any cultural barriers to the advancement of the free Human spirit. …."



“ … The next one: You're going to heal a continent. Watch for it. It begins. Watch for major shift in Africa. We have said this before, even within the meetings I spoke in what you call the United Nations. Africa has never even been a potential player in the economic field, because it has been sick. What happens when you heal a continent? I'm going to tell you. Suddenly, the people on that continent also want what you have - government that works, peace, their own homes, schools, hospitals, and even banks where they can borrow from. They don't have any of those now, not really. Everything with substance is from somewhere else. That means you're going to have a continent that's going to arise that will become a major player on the stage of Earth's finances and political influence - an entire continent with all the resources on it, with even the potential for unification of common purpose, much like what you have now in your EU. I'm giving you information, and when it happens, again, I say you'll remember where you heard it.

Many years ago, the prevailing thought was that nobody should consider China as a viable player on the economic stage. They were backward, filled with a system that would never be westernized, and had no wish to become joined with the rest of the world's economic systems. Look what has happened in only 30 years. Now, look at Africa differently.. ...”